Meet Your Board of Directors!

The Board of Directors plays a critical role in ensuring the continued success and health of this important organization. We represent all the owners in determining appropriate organizational performance. We are engaged primarily in developing the vision and long-term viability of the Co-op. We do not run the store nor do we have direct control over its daily operations. The Board seeks owner input on the goals and vision of the organization. It reports periodically to the owners on the Board’s activities, decisions, and compliance with board policies. We operate under what is called Policy Governance – a board operating system that emphasizes values, vision, and the empowerment of both board and staff.

What is the Board’s Role?

The Board of Directors is the legal representative of NHFC owners and is responsible for the overall well-being of the Co-op. The Board exercises its authority through its relationship with the General Manager whom it hires and monitors. The Board’s expectations and requirements for the General Manager’s performance are clearly stated in the Board’s written policies. The Board ensures the Co-op’s success by verifying that the General Manager remains in compliance with those policies.

The Board does not involve itself in operational details. It does not make decisions about the products on store shelves, the specifics of personnel issues, or other day-to-day matters. The Board governs by declaring, through its policies, the results it wants and the actions it wants the General Manager to avoid while achieving those results.

How to Contact Your Board of Directors:

If you have any questions for the board they can be contacted collectively at board@naturalharvest.coop or individually by using the links in their profiles below.

Stephen Levchak

Stephen Levchak

President & Education Committee Chisholm, MN Email Stephen View Bio

Steve was born and raised in Chisholm and attended UMD, where he received his bachelor’s degree in Teaching Earth and Space Science. He returned to the Iron Range to pursue a career at Hibbing Taconite, where he has worked since 2006. In his spare time, Steve enjoys reading, playing the guitar, watching nature documentaries, viewing the night sky through his telescope, and spending time outdoors. He also likes trying all of the new recipes that his wife Erin creates and is fortunate to find such a great selection of healthy foods at the Co-op. Steve looks forward to working with the other members of the Board to help ensure the long-term success of our co-op.

Victoria Ranua

Victoria Ranua

Vice President & Perpetuation Committee Soudan, MN Email Victoria View Bio

When asked as a child what I wanted to be when I grew up, my response was always “Be a beekeeper and have an apple orchard”. I did grow up to do both, as well as growing/producing other local foods. This led to being involved in promoting local food with fellow producers and delving into the business aspects of local food production. As soon as we purchased a home in Soudan, MN I became a Co-op Owner. I am glad to use my skills and time to serve on the board of an entity that has a long history of providing good food to the community and aid in its ability to do so with perpetuity.

Raini Knaeble-Weiss

Raini Knaeble-Weiss

Secretary & Education Committee Eveleth, MN Email Raini View Bio

Hello Co-op Owners and Community Members. My name is Raini Knaeble-Weiss, I was born and raised in Eveleth. After graduating from high school, I moved away to St. Paul and obtained a bachelor’s degree in English from the College of St. Catherine’s. I later went on to get my master’s degree in Community Counseling from The University of Wisconsin-Superior. I have lived and worked in various positions in mental and behavioral health on the Iron Range since 2007. I am now working as an outpatient therapist for Fairview Range. Being a Co-op Owner is a source of community connection that is important to me. I am passionate about local, humanely raised and responsibly sourced food, which lead to my decision to run for a seat on the board. I am grateful for the opportunity to represent other Co-op Owners and thank you for your vote.

Tera Nowicki

Tera Nowicki

Treasurer and Perpetuation Committee Virginia, MN Email Tera View Bio

Tera moved to Virginia MN in 2013. She is originally from the area of Saint Paul. She is an Enrolled Agent and has been a small business owner since 2010, specializing in accounting services. She has always been very passionate about supporting local businesses and loves the season of farmers markets. Luckily, we have Natural Harvest all year round! She is honored to be part of such a great organization that shares common values.

Sulaiman Syed

Sulaiman Syed

GM Evaluation Committee Makinen, MN Email Sulaiman View Bio

Upon moving into the area in April 2021 and learning about the Natural Harvest Food Co-op, I quickly became a member because I believe in the values of a cooperative model, which is democratically organized and managed, focusing on uplifting the local food economy and providing high quality products to the community. I would like to serve as a Board Member for Natural Harvest because I want to offer my skills and experience to help build a greater sense of community, uphold the values of the Co-op, and continue to improve access to a robust and healthy local food economy.

I have over 12 years of experience working in Accounting and Finance in a wide array of industries, ranging from private multi-national corporations to local small businesses and non-profit organizations. I obtained my CPA license in 2011, a Masters in Economics in 2019, and currently work as a Financial Analyst. I have strong experience in financial reporting, long-range financial planning, and financial modeling. I believe the breadth and diversity of my experience would be an asset to the Board and the Natural Harvest Co-op.

As we are entering a period of radical flux and global/systemic challenges, some challenges specific to the food economy include swings in food commodity prices driven by adverse climate conditions and supply-chain bottlenecks. This is an opportunity for Natural Harvest to boost its local footprint by furthering its efforts in supporting and promoting local food providers.

Kyle Lynch

Kyle Lynch

Education Committee Tower, MN Email Kyle View Bio

Kyle has lived on the Iron Range his entire life. Graduating from Mesabi East in 1999 then pursuing a career in manufacturing at Lake Superior College as a CNC Machine programmer. After over a decade of working in various aspects of manufacturing developing skills working with computers, design and engineering, combined with a passion for playing, writing, and recording music since 16 years old eventually fell into a career in the music industry. Through those next years of gaining experience he eventually started his own business that still operates to this day. After years of hard work taking its toll with a back injury it became obvious that healthy living had to become a priority to being able to continue to grow in business and in life. This led to a passion of self-improvement to lead a healthy lifestyle with organic living to which the center of that has become the Natural Harvest in our community. He is honored to now be a part of the board for the Natural Harvest to contribute to the growth of what has become a staple in his life.

Jennifer Krenz

Jennifer Krenz

GM Evaluation Committee Gilbert, MN Email Jennifer View Bio

I would like to participate in maintaining a valuable community resource that contributes to a healthy lifestyle for myself, family, and community.

My diverse work experience has given me a strong background in grant management, non-profit administration, and financial management.

One of the biggest challenges will be to stay relevant in an increasingly competitive market. Big box retailers continue to increase offerings of organic food and wellness products making it difficulty to attract future customers that are able to achieve one-stop–shopping on a tight household budget.

Dominic Renollet

Dominic Renollet

Perpetuation Committee Chisholm, MN Email Dominic View Bio

Growing up, Nick lived in many different states, from the East Coast to the West Coast and North to South. He experienced many regional cultures from all walks of life. All this travel opened his mind and palate to trying new things. He strongly embraces the belief that food should be our medicine and the things we eat, and drink will directly affect our health and wellness. Nick is excited to be part of the Co-op community and is honored to serve on the board

Find Us

732 N. 4th St.
Virginia, MN 55792

218.741.4663
info@naturalharvest.coop

M-F: 8AM-7PM | Weekends: 9AM-6PM

Let's Get Social
Website Design & Development by W.A. Fisher Co | Report Problems

CURBSIDE PICKUP: We are unable to accept orders scheduled for pickup between 11am-2pm. We apologize for any inconvenience.

X